After racing at the crisp modern facility that is the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, the Formula One circus travels to the “characterful” cramped paddock of Interlagos in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

While both circuits run in an anti-clockwise direction, the Brazilian track – which is the second shortest track on the calendar after Monaco – requires a different approach.

“The downforce level we normally run here is slightly lower than in Austin, which is classically very near the maximum mainly to get the tyres working,” Ferrari Engineering Director Pat Fry told

“Many of the corners in Brazil involve braking and turning, producing high lateral forces, which means it’s quite difficult to get the car balance correct, so there are quite a few challenges in the medium to slow speed corners,” he added.

“Apart from that, you need to get the drag level right for the long run up the hill and down the pit straight.”

The tyre choice that Pirelli were originally intending to use were the medium and hard compound tyre, however the sports sole tyre supplier changed their decision after the track had been resurfaced.

“When it came clear that the nature of the surface was going to give the tyres an easier time, they’ve now come to a choice that everyone is going to be happier with, namely the medium and softer compounds,” Fry continued.

“In the past, tyre wear has been severe, pushing you towards a multi-stop race. I’m not sure what the case will be with the resurfacing, so we will have to wait and see.”

However the predicted weather forecast suggests that slick tyres may not see much of the tracks new surface. Recent races in Brazil have been affected by rain, and this weekend may not be any different.

Rain is predicted throughout the weekend, although so far it seems that it will only affect the practice sessions with hot and sunny conditions expected for the race.

A dry Friday practice session would be welcomed with open arms by Ferrari.

“Although we are coming from a back-to-back race with Austin, there are still a large number of test items we have got to try and get through aimed at our 2015 project,” Fry said.

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Michael Terminello

Journalist at MotorsportM8